Young Ah Seo

Research Associate

Department of Genetics and Complex Diseases

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
665 Huntington Ave
Bulding II, Room 133
Boston, MA 02115
Phone: (617) 432-2253

Research Associate:

July 2014 – Current

Postdoctoral Research Fellow:

August 2012 – July 2014


Ph.D. Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA
B.S. Ewha Womans University, Seoul, South Korea

Research Interest:

My research focuses on homeostasis and toxicity of transition metals at the molecular, cellular, and animal levels. I investigate the genetic and nutritional effects on metal-induced transport and toxicity in the context of environmental exposure and pathogenesis of neurodegeneration.

Honors and Awards:

NIH K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award  (K99ES024340)
9/1/2014 – 8/31/2019
Role: Principal Investigator
Title: Influence of Genetic Variation on Manganese Neurotoxicity and Parkinson’s Disease.

Harvard NIEHS Center Facility Access Funds Award (P30 ES000002)
8/13/2015 –
Role : Principal Investigator
Title: Effect of Ferroportin Genetic Variants on Intracellular Metal Levels

Harvard NIEHS Center Facility Access Funds Award (P30 ES000002)
2/9/2015 –
Role : Principal Investigator
Title: Tissue Metal Analysis of Flatiron Mice

Harvard-NIH/NIEHS Pilot Project Grant Award (P30 ES000002)
3/1/2013 –
Role: Principal Investigator
Title: Manganese-induced Neuronal Cell Apoptosis through ER Stress.

Robert Gunn Student Award for Cell and Molecular Physiology
American Physiological Society 2012

Woot-Tsuen Wu Leung Scholarship given to outstanding nutrition student
Pennsylvania State University 2011

1st place of the Vitamin and Mineral Research Poster Competition 
American Society for Nutrition 2011

1st place of the Graduate Student Research Award Competition
American Society for Nutrition 2010

Wrigley Science Institute Predoctoral Fellowship
American Society for Nutrition 2010

Magna Cum Laude graduate
Ewha Womans University


Seo YA and Wessling-Resnick M. (2015) Ferroportin deficiency impairs manganese metabolism in  flatiron mice. FASEB Journal[Epub ahead of print] PMC4478796

Hennigar SR, Seo YA, Sharma S, Soybel DI, and Kelleher SL. (2015) ZnT2 is a critical mediator of lysosomal-mediated cell death during early mammary gland involution. Scientific Reports. 5:8033 PMC4306139

Seo YA, Lee S, Hennigar SR, and Kelleher SL. (2014) Prolactin-stimulated ubiquitination of ZnT2 mediates a transient increase in Zn secretion followed by ZnT2 degradation in mammary epithelial cells. Journal of Biological Chemistry 289(34):23653-61. PMC4156067

Seo YA, Li Y, Wessling-Resnick M. (2013) Iron depletion increases manganese uptake and potentiates apoptosis through ER stress. Neurotoxicology 38C:67-73. PMC3770814

Lasry I*, Seo YA*, Ityel H, Shalva N, Pode-Shakked B, Glaser F, Berman B, Berezovsky I, Goncearenco A, Klar A, Levy J, Anikster Y, Kelleher SL, Assaraf YG. (2012) A dominant negative heterozygous G87R mutation in the zinc transporter, ZnT-2 (slc30a2), results in transient neonatal zinc deficiency. (*Co-first authors). Journal of Biological Chemistry 287(35):29348-61. PMC3436150

Dempsey C, McCormick NH, Croxford TP, Seo YA, Grider A, and Kelleher SL. (2011) Marginal maternal zinc deficiency in lactating mice reduces secretory capacity and alters milk composition. Journal of Nutrition 142(4):655-60. PMC3301987

Seo YA, Lopez V, Kelleher SL. (2011) A histidine-rich motif mediates mitochondrial localization of ZnT2 to modulate mitochondrial function. American Journal of Physiology Cell Physiology 300: C1479-89. PMC3118624

Seo YA, Kelleher SL. (2010) Functional analysis of two single nucleotide polymorphisms in SLC30A2 (ZnT2): implications for mammary gland function and breast disease in women. Physiological Genomics 42A: 219-27. PMC3008367

Qian L, Lopez V, Seo YA, Kelleher SL. (2009) Prolactin regulates ZNT2 expression through the JAK2/STAT5 signaling pathway in mammary cells. American Journal of Physiology Cell Physiology 297: C369-77. PMC2724096

Kelleher SL, Seo YA, Lopez V. (2009) Mammary gland zinc metabolism: regulation and dysregulation. Genes and Nutrition 4: 83-94. PMC2690727